2 Manitoba triathletes secure spots on Team Canada for Rio Olympics

Triathletes Sarah-Anne Brault and Tyler Mislawchuk have both qualified for the Rio Olympics.

Tyler Mislawchuk, Sarah-Anne Brault to compete in 1st Olympic games

Sarah-Anne Brault, who lived and trained in Manitoba for 10 years, has made it onto Canada's Olympic triathlon team. (Jun Sato/ITU via Getty Images)

Triathletes Sarah-Anne Brault and Tyler Mislawchuk have both qualified for the Rio Olympics.

Mislawchuk, 21, from Oak Bluff, Man., has two 10th-place finishes — one in Abu Dhabi, another in Yokohama — this season. He was also 10th at the summer 2015 Pan Am Games.
Canada's Tyler Mislawchuk drinks water after he crosses the finish line for a 10th place finish during the men's triathlon at the 2015 Pan Am Games in Toronto in 2015. (Mark Blinch/Canadian Press)

He started training when he was 16 years old as a way to cross train for hockey, he said.

"I knew I wasn't built to be a hockey player and I fell in love with [being a triathlete]," he said. 

"I saw progression every day."

Calling his most recent accomplishment an "absolute honour," Mislawchuk said it's a big moment for him, but equally for his parents.

"They didn't get out much words when I told them, to be honest," he said.

"A few tears from both of them, which you don't see very often from my dad … They used to get up when I first started and would drive me to the pool at 6 a.m. every morning so I could get a swim workout in before I headed off to high school."

Mislawchuk said his parents would be back in the afternoon to pick him up again for another practice.

While he said he receives support from Triathlon Canada, Sport Canada and a few private sponsors, his training — which has taken him to more than 20 countries in two years — has primarily been funded by the "bank of mom and dad."

"Without them, I wouldn't be here," he said.

"It's as simple as that."

Brault, 26, was born in Quebec City but lived and trained in Manitoba between the ages of eight and 18. She was a backup for Team Canada during the 2012 London Olympics and came in first in the junior division during the 2008 Pan Am Games.

Triathlon Canada says Team Canada has secured two spots in the men's event and three in the women's at the upcoming Summer Games.

Rio will be a first-time Olympic experience for Mislawchuk and Brault.

With files from Benjamin Blum and Callum Ng